I'm a safari tart in the best possible sense of the word. I write reviews, books +articles about safari lodges & other gr8 places. Somebody's got to do it!
Ebola in Africa - you can still come on safari to southern and east Africa

Ebola in Africa – you can still come on safari to southern and east Africa

Ebola is a terrifying virus, but what you need to know is that the nearest case of Ebola is +-3,000 miles/5,000 kilometres from any of the safari areas mentioned on this blog. That’s about the same distance from West Africa to Berlin or Rio de Janeiro. This means you can...
Tree-climbing goats - Namibia

Tree-climbing goats – Namibia

When there’s nothing nice to eat on the ground these goats in Nambia take to the trees. I’ve never seen anything like it! Have you?
Halo Gaia Liquid Body Retreat in Mozambique

Halo Gaia Liquid Body Retreat in Mozambique

Enter the Liquid Body and reconnect with your deep sensuality in the company of wild dolphins. This weekend workshop on the coast of southern Mozambique is facilitated through Halo Gaia by the mermaid Courtney Ward (when you read my blog post Dancing With Dolphins you’ll know what I mean) and...
Zambezi Queen luxury houseboat on the Chobe

Zambezi Queen luxury houseboat on the Chobe

The Zambezi Queen is a 5-star triple-decker houseboat providing possibly the best way to go on safari that has been invented! She floats in a watery no-man’s land with Namibia on one bank and Botswana’s Chobe National Park on the other. With an estimated 160,000 elephant in Chobe (approximately half the world’s...
Farewell Nelson Mandela

Farewell Nelson Mandela

It is with the greatest sorrow in my heart that I pay tribute to Nelson Mandela – a man I was lucky enough to meet and in whose light I bathed for a few moments; i felt his embrace, i kissed his lips. I felt his strength and compassion and...
How to fell a baobab tree, Mozambique

How to fell a baobab tree, Mozambique

Tragic that this ancient baobab should be felled and at what point did it give way….look closely:
Samara Cheetah Cub rescued

Samara Cheetah Cub rescued

                          Friday the 14th June 2013: a tiny little cheetah cub was born to Bellini, one of the wild cheetah’s at Samara.   None of her previous cubs have survived.   She hid the cub under a bush...
Breakfast with Giraffe

Breakfast with Giraffe

Anyone for breakfast with giraffe? It’s a daily occurrence at Giraffe Manor outside Nairobi in Kenya. There you are in your bedroom and next thing a giraffe’s face is at your window. At breakfast they reach in for some pellets from the breakfast table. I remember opening the front door...
Camping & Glamping is big in 2013

Camping & Glamping is big in 2013

Are you a Camper or Glamper? The former is you, your tent and whatever you bring along to make things more comfortable. The latter is you pretending you’re camping but really someone else has pitched the tent for you (or it is semi-permanent luxury room that happens to have canvas...
Top 5 weird, wonderful, and just plain kooky hotel requests in 2012

Top 5 weird, wonderful, and just plain kooky hotel requests in 2012

This is a the Top 5 strangest requests made on Protea Hotel’s staff in 2012. A burly guest insisted on being sung to as it was the only sure cure for his insomnia. It worked! A Cape Town GM had to go out at 8pm in search of goldfish for...
Footprint Quiz

Footprint Quiz

Who made this print in the wet sand at Phinda Private Game Reserve in KZN? That’s what the Head Ranger at Forest Lodge asked me after he heard I had been to more than 200 safari lodges? He reckoned I must have been on enough game drives to be able...
Kaingo Camp, South Luangwa, Zambia

Kaingo Camp, South Luangwa, Zambia

I have been invited to Shenton Safaris camps in the wild South Luangwa Valley of Zambia and these pics make me want to pack my bag right now!  This is real wild Africa, much more earthy and spontaneous than a safari in South Africa with lots of animal thrills to...
Mumbo Island ranked in Top 100 Hotels in World - read what I think...

Mumbo Island ranked in Top 100 Hotels in World – read what I think…

                            Is Mumbo Island one of my Top 100 places to go in the world…..YES absolutely! People often ask me where is the best place I have been and when reeling off my personal favourites Mumbo Island is...
Safari pics that make you want to be there!

Safari pics that make you want to be there!

When I look at these photographs, I want to be there right now – don’t  you? See link on each photo to find out where it is.                      
Sibuya Game Lodge, nr Port Elizabeth

Sibuya Game Lodge, nr Port Elizabeth

  This privately owned reserve up the Kariega River from Kenton-on-Sea in the Eastern Cape is the Garden of Eden. It has all the components of nature that make you want to weep at its beauty, marvel at the perfect animal specimens all fat and glossy coats, and sink into the sophoric rhythm...
Abu Camp, Okavango - new baby elephant

Abu Camp, Okavango – new baby elephant

IT’S A GIRL! Abu Camp, best known as one of the first elephant back riding safari lodges, deep in the Okavango Delta, has had a new arrival. Shireni, one of the Camp’s leading matriach’s, gave birth to her third living calf at ten in the evening on 17 December 2011. Measuring approximately 90cm...
India House, Bains Kloof Pass, nr Cape Town

India House, Bains Kloof Pass, nr Cape Town

I love it when I find a real gem of a place when I least expect it. That is what happened at India House. I went to assess Bastiaanskloof for star grading and found that part of their accommodation was a divine villa called India House in the middle of...
UGANDA; Gorillas, Chimps  & tree-climbing Lions

UGANDA; Gorillas, Chimps & tree-climbing Lions

                    Uganda doesn’t get talked about that much when it comes to safari and most people don’t even know it’s got much more than gorillas. In a country the size of UK, there’s so much more……. including: a whopping 1000 species...
Dancing With Dolphins in Mozambique

Dancing With Dolphins in Mozambique

Courtney Ward has been “dancing with dolphins” for ten years in the warm waters of southern Mozambique at Ponta Malongane. People say she is part dolphin and you can believe it when you see her gliding through the water like a mermaid with her mono-fin.   Dolphins crowd around her...
Buffalo Ridge Safari Lodge

Buffalo Ridge Safari Lodge

Guests at Buffalo Ridge Safari Lodge had a surprise visit from an opportunistic elephant, who simply couldn’t resist the cool, crystal clear, swimming pool water on a hot spring day in Madikwe Game Reserve.    Photographed by 18 year old Tom Rudolphie of The Netherlands.  Buffalo Ridge is a community...
Samara Private Game Reserve

Samara Private Game Reserve

I have been going on safari in Africa every year for 15 years, yet it was at Samara Private Game Reserve, in the middle of nowhere in the Graaff-Reinet Karoo, that I found the possibility of two elements of a safari that had so far eluded me; a yoga mat and...
Southern Africa Yoga Safaris

Southern Africa Yoga Safaris

In a hidden location amongst giant sandstone rocks on the West Coast of South Africa near Eland’s Bay, Southern African Yoga Safaris makes use of a rocky retreat for a getaway with a difference. While doing your ‘Salute to the Sun’ or Tree Posture, you stare out and may meet...
Leopard vs Mouse

Leopard vs Mouse

These extraordinary leopard pictures were captured by photography student Casey Gutteridge at the Santago Rare Leopard Project in Hertfordshire. Copyright of http://solentnews.biz/.  Seemingly unaware of the beast, the mouse diced with death when it tucked into the leopard’s lunch. The mischievous rodent grabbed at scraps of meat thrown into the...
Eco-friendly Safaris

Eco-friendly Safaris

Here’s some news about eco-friendly safari camps and ‘green’ safari lodges that go the extra mile take care of the environment: Garonga Safari Camp Garonga Safari Camp in the Makalali Reserve (not too far from Kruger National Park) ensures that all rubbish is separated and foodstuffs are used for warthogs...
Tuningi Safari Lodge

Tuningi Safari Lodge

Look who joined the afternoon picnic at Tuningi Safari lodge!   These curious young lions came to investigate as guests from Tuningi Safari Lodge enjoyed their sundowner game drive drinks & snacks in the Madikwe Game Reserve. 
Bushman's Kloof Wilderness Reserve

Bushman’s Kloof Wilderness Reserve

‘Number One Hotel in the World’ according to 2009 US Travel + Leisure World’s Best Awards reader’s survey. What an accolade!  This 5-star wilderness resort in the foothills of the Cederberg Mountains is one of my favourite places with a landscape like no other only 270km from Cape Town.
Garden Route Game Lodge

Garden Route Game Lodge

I was really impressed with Garden Route Game Lodge.  It is of course ‘soft safari’, as are all the game reserves in the Western Cape.  It is because this populated region doesn’t have tracts of spare land the size of small European countries - like Kruger Park - in which the largest...
Tortoise Adopts Hippo

Tortoise Adopts Hippo

When this baby hippo losts its mother, it found the next best thing, a giant tortoise.  Nicknamed Owen, weighing around 300 kg  (650 pounds), this little hippo was swept down the Sabaki River to the Indian Ocean, then washed back ashore by tsunami waves that struck the Kenyan coast on...
Singita Lebombo Safari Lodge

Singita Lebombo Safari Lodge

I wouldn’t mind going to Heaven if it was like Singita Lebombo. I have been here once before (Lebombo, not Heaven) but this visit had a more profound effect on me. The subtle change in décor, from touches of lime green and grey amongst a sea of white, to a...
Safari Tart meets Tutu & Mandela

Safari Tart meets Tutu & Mandela

I arrived in Africa from London in 1995 and in that time I’ve been lucky enough to meet two great icons of world history; Archbishop Desmond Tutu and Nelson Mandela. Both are my heroes whom I hold in the very highest regard above all others. It was never my goal to meet them, I...
Elephants march through Mfuwe Lodge

Elephants march through Mfuwe Lodge

  The 18-room Mfuwe Lodge has a large reception area particularly suited to wandering elephants. Their favourite mango trees are just on the other side of the building and they see no reason why they shouldn’t take the direct route straight through the lodge! 
Makanyane Safari Lodge

Makanyane Safari Lodge

My first introduction to Makanyane Safari Lodge was a face to face meeting with an elephant at the door of my cottage. “I’ll just go and shoo him away, said the lodge manager, Garth Kew. So he walked towards said elephant and shouted “Shoo!”  Elephant ignored him, so Garth ran...
Lion Eats Car

Lion Eats Car

  If you ever thought lions look like large pussy cats, take a look at these photos taken by a holidaymaker in the Krugersdorp area of South Africa.
Lion Sands Ivory Lodge

Lion Sands Ivory Lodge

You may think that a safari lodge decorated in no other colours than black and white (and variations from rich creams to deep brown), could be monotone. But it’s not. Lion Sands Ivory Lodge in the Lion Sands Private Game Reserve adjacent to Kruger National Park, uses shades and textures...
Twyfelfontein Country Lodge & Opuwo Country Hotel

Twyfelfontein Country Lodge & Opuwo Country Hotel

Damaraland, Namibia Not many places make your jaw drop in amazement, or make you want to utter a lazily drawn-out expletive, because no other suitable word comes to mind. But Twyfelfontein Country Lodge did just that. This immense thatched lodge, in the heart of red-rock country in the middle of...
Royal Malewane, Thornybush Reserve

Royal Malewane, Thornybush Reserve

When people mention Royal Malewane, they use the kind of hushed tones often reserved for someone held in high regard. This is because Royal Malewane seems to have effortlessly created a safari lodge at the pinnacle of taste, within the boundaries of timeless, classic elegance. Simply put, it epitomizes all...
Lake Kariba, Zimbabwe

Lake Kariba, Zimbabwe

“Can you come to Lake Kariba on Thursday for a week?”, said a friendly voice. “I know it’s Monday today but I have space for one more person on my houseboat going down the length of Lake Kariba.” My initial reaction was that I couldn’t get organised in three days,...
Hippo Lodge, Kafue National Park, Zambia - The Cherry on the Safari Cake

Hippo Lodge, Kafue National Park, Zambia – The Cherry on the Safari Cake

  Just when I thought life on safari couldn’t get any better, it did. It was my birthday and I was sitting in a bubbling hot spring on the edge of the Kafue River in Zambia. Fireflies were dancing around my head and a fellow journalist on this press trip...
Plains Camp, Platforms Sleepout and Rhino Post Lodge: walking & 4x4

Plains Camp, Platforms Sleepout and Rhino Post Lodge: walking & 4×4

On a private concession inside Kruger National Park…. Rhino Walking Safaris have, in my opinion, got it right. They have a variety of safari experiences in their three accommodation options; Rhino Post Lodge, Plains Camp and Platforms – a multi-level large wooden sleepout platform in the middle of nowhere, where...
Horseriding in Okavango Delta

Horseriding in Okavango Delta

  This is no ordinary horse ride! Novice riders need not apply; experience and a high level of in-the-saddle competence is a pre-requisite for this adventure with African Horseback Safaris. You have to handle horses that are fit and raring-to-go, as well possible encounters with big game of the Okavango Delta like...
Latest entries
Sibella the Samara Cheetah - do you have any photos of her?

Sibella the Samara Cheetah – do you have any photos of her?

  Samara’s beloved cheetah, Sibella, who has successfully contributed to expanding the wild cheetah gene pool by having litters of 5, 6 & 7 surviving cubs, is going have her inspirational life commemorated in a book.         Samara are requesting guests to send hi-res photographs and comments on what “meeting” this phenomenal cat meant...
World Lion Day 10 August

World Lion Day 10 August

10 August 2014 marks World Lion Day, honouring one of our planet’s most iconic species. Lions guard our temples, adorn our flags, decorate our coins and capture our hearts.  On almost every continent and in thousands of cultures, lions are used as an icon of strength and power. Yet we are destroying them. The illegal...
Rhino Relocation from SA to Botswana – is it a good idea?

Rhino Relocation from SA to Botswana – is it a good idea?

Two of South Africa’s biggest safari lodge tour operators Wilderness Safaris and &Beyond are involved in the relocation of rhinos from South Africa to Botswana. It sounds like a fantastic initiative considering one rhino is poached every 9 hours in South Africa. But I have some reservations and wonder is this really a good idea?...
Your Own Personal Safari Photo Book

Your Own Personal Safari Photo Book

Take a look at these fabulous personalised photo books offered by some innovative safari lodges as an added benefit to their guests and a reminder of your safari. The books are branded by safari lodges like Shamwari, Sanbona, Londolozi, Motswari, Sanctuary Retreats of Botswana and the ultimate train journey Rovos Rail. They have photos of...
Nightjar Adventurer of the Year 2014......and the winner is....

Nightjar Adventurer of the Year 2014……and the winner is….

There are people out there that set themselves the most extraordinary challenges to prove that it can be done and often to raise awareness of good causes. Take a look at The Nightjar Travel website and their 2014 Adventurer of the Year.  It’s hard to choose as each of the eight individuals or teams have managed feats of endurance that...
Zambian Photographic Safaris with David Rogers

Zambian Photographic Safaris with David Rogers

If you’re a keen photographer, you can’t do better than to go on one of David Rogers Photographic Safaris .  Why? Because you’ll come back with an enviable collection of photos after the safari of a lifetime. It makes such a difference to go on a game drive or walk with a real purpose and...
Elephants - why I'm scared of them

Elephants – why I’m scared of them

“I’m not scared of lions, I’m scared of elephants. One killed my father,” said my safari walking guide who has lived his whole life in a village inside Botswana’s Okavango Delta. Here are a few pictures why he’s right….. If any of the photos are yours and you wish me to credit you or remove...
World Rhino Day 22 Sept -  Tweet #iam4rhinos

World Rhino Day 22 Sept – Tweet #iam4rhinos

World Rhino Day and 618 rhinos have been killed in South Africa so far this year. Tweet #iam4rhinos and join the attempt to reach a million tweets in support of rhinos.  
Elephant straddles car

Elephant straddles car

I’m not sure where or when this happened – I saw it on Facebook – but it puts the size of an elephant into perspective.   Take a look at another of our Animal Antics blog post of an enormous elephant trashing a campsite and squashing a car with a rooftop tent. The most scary moments...
Review of Aquila Private Game Reserve nr Cape Town

Review of Aquila Private Game Reserve nr Cape Town

Only 2-hours drive from Cape Town, once you go through the gates of Aquila you are transported into a wonderful world of their own making – like stepping into a safari film set, which is very real for the time you are in it. If you go in Spring (August/Sept ) you may be lucky...
Can you spot the leopard?

Can you spot the leopard?

There REALLY is a leopard in this picture – can you see it? Scroll down for the answer once you’ve tried really hard.   Did you know…..   a leopard’s spots form a unique pattern, something like a fingerprint leopards can pull dead prey weighing up to 50kg up into a tree, away from predators...
New Mara Plains Camp, Kenya

New Mara Plains Camp, Kenya

July 2013 the new Mara Plains Camp in the portfolio of Great Plains Conservation became the latest in bespoke safari accommodation and experiences. The brand new Mara Plains Camp adopts many of the values and low impact design ethics of their Botswana Zarafa Camp, but with an East Africa twist. It is also one of the...